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Winthrop pitches 7th shutout in victory over Lisbon

Sport: Football  Posted: November 16th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

Covered in mud from crown to cleat but spotless from summer two-a-days to autumn deluge, Winthrop capped its majestic run through Western Class C with a 34-0 championship whitewashing of Lisbon.

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Scots headed back to state final

Sport: Football  Posted: November 16th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

Bonny Eagle, the defending state champion, is heading to the Class A final next Saturday for the fourth time in five seasons after beating Thornton Academy 20-0 for the regional title in the rain and mud Saturday at Hill Stadium.

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Scores, photos from Girls MBR All-Star Weekend, 11/15

Sport: Basketball (Girls)  Posted: November 16th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

What a great day of basketball.  A really uplifting day watching these players interact, exhibit good sportsmanship, play hard and have fun...

thank you all for being a part of it...  Good luck to all in the upcoming season..

INDIVIDUAL PLAYER PHOTOS for all participants and ACTION PHOTOS for class D,C,B,2012) taken by http://www.ronhawkes.com  can be seen by
going to this link: http://rh.exposuremanager.com/g/mbr_all_star_showcase_2008
Thanks Ron

Game Scores and individual scoring......

Class D East 46
Class D West 34
 D West:  34
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
0    Cindy      Schultz    5'0"    2011    Valley   4
1    Ashlee    Hamann    5'3    2010    Buckfield  4
3    Megan      Christy    5'3"    2010    Richmond  4
9    Amelia    Davidson    5'6    2010    Vinalhaven 4
10    Jocelyn      Laweryson    5'6    2011    Valley 2
18    Emily    Eastman    5'7"    2010    Buckfield 2
23    Lindsay      Henderson    5'8"    2009    Buckfield 2
24    Megan      DeRaps    5'8"    2010    Richmond 4
38    Crystal    Allen    5'10"    2009    Forest Hills 2
47    Abby    Jones    5'10    2009    Buckfield 6
D East:  46
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
7    Olivia    McNally    5'3"    2010    Katahdin  4
21    Julia    Nicholas    5'5"    2009    Woodland 5
25    Shelby      Searles    5'7    2009    Lubec 5
26    Ariel      Knights    5'7    2010    Woodland 9
28    Brittany      Charette    5'7"    2009    So. Aroostook 2
30    Hope    Johnson    5'8    2009    Calvary Chapel 4
33    BreAnna    Beal    5'8"    2009    Jonesport-Beals 2
40    Kasi    Parker    5'10"    2009    GHCA 10
41    Kelly     Robinson    5'11    2009    Bangor Christian 4
50    Audra    Eaton    6'0"    2009    DIS 1

Class C East 47
Class D West 42
C West:  42
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
6    Mariam    Qazi    5'5    2009    Waynflete 10
12    Amy    Lemieux    5'6"    2009    Traip 2
17    Whitney    Stacey    5'7    2010    Sacopee Valley dns
27    Hillary    Deane    5'9    2010    Jay 4
32    Amy     Skillings    5'9"    2009    Hall-Dale 2
35    Kenni    Norton    5'10    2009    Mt. Abram 6
37    Lindsey    Gordon    5'10"    2009    Winthrop 5
46    Suzy    Cote    5'10    2009    Carrebec 3
49    Allaina     Murphy    5'11    2011    St. Doms 8
55    Taylor     Massey    6'0"    2011    Hall-Dale 2
 C East:  47
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
3    Courtney    Hill    5'3    2009    Calais 1
4    Emily    Pelletier    5'3    2009    Fort Kent 6
14    Jade    Keezer    5'5    2011    Orono 3
20    Taylor    Boucher    5'6"    2010    Fort Kent 8
24    Elizabeth    Fox    5'7    2011    Orono 2
29    Kirsten    Marter    5'8    2011    Stearns 1
36    Maddi    Park    5'9    2009    GSA 19
37    Andi      Flannery     5'9    2010    Washington Acad. 3
39    Amanda    Ostberg    5'10"    2009    Narraguagus 2
51    Andrea      Perry     6'1    2010    Narraguagus 2

Futures game ( class of 2012 East ) 33
Futures game ( class of 2012 West ) 32
 Futures game ( class of 2012 West ) 32
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
4    Meghan    Gribbin    5'4    2012    Windham 7
13    Allie      Palazzi-Leahy    5'6"    2012    Cheverus 2
20    Kaylee    Taylor    5'8    2012    Westbrook dns
28    Sarah      Perkins    5'9    2012    Gorham 4
29    Maggie       McConkey    5'9    2012    Fryeburg 5
33    Ella    Ramonas     5'9"    2012    Deering dns
34    Selena    Lorrey    5'9"    2012    Traip 6
39    Emily      Kothman    5'10"    2012    Scarborough 1
50    Morgan    Cahill    6'0    2012    Yarmouth dns
56    Alexa     Coulombe    6'2"    2012    Mcauley 7
 Futures game ( class of 2012 East ) 33
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
5    Paige    Martin    5'3    2012    John Bapst 6
6    Katie    Henrickson    5'3    2012    Morse 1
10    Mary      Badeen    5'4    2012    Nokomis 6
17    Alanna    Vose    5'6    2012    Medomak Valley 3
18    Becky      Champagne     5'6    2012    Brunswick 5
21    Allie      Hill    5'6"    2012    Calais dns
27    Mia    Diplock    5'7    2012    Cony 8
31    Marissa      Shaw    5'8    2012    Nokomis 4
52    Courtney    Treadwell    6'1    2012    Old Town dns
53    Megan    Pelletier    6'1"    2012    Winslow dns

Class B East 35
Class B West 45
 Class B West 45
#         Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
2    Abby  Hancock    5'3"    2010    Lake Region dns
5    Ariel     McConckey    5'5    2010    Fryeburg 2
16    Stephanie    Gallagher    5'7    2011    York dns
19    Kari    Jones    5'8    2009    Lincoln Academy 8
25    Vanessa    Cayer    5'9    2009    Mountain Valley 2
26    Alex    Donald    5'9    2009    Oak Hill dns
30    Haley    Jordan    5'9"    2009    Falmouth 2
31    Brooke    Stevens    5'9"    2009    Wells 6
48    Niki    Taylor    5'11    2011    York 19
52    Abby    Young - injured    6'0"    2010    Greely
53    Eden    Cianciolo    6'0"    2009    Fryeburg 6
Class B East 35
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
0    Mary    Trahan    5'1"    2009    Gardiner dns
2    Chelsea    Striker    5'3    2009    Gardiner 7
8    Brooke    Hanscom    5'4    2010    Mattanawcook 4
9    Morgan    Chasse    5'4    2009    John Bapst 10
12    Katelyn    DeRaps    5'5"    2011    Mattanawcook  4
19    Julie    Smith - injured    5'6"    2011    Belfast
32    Alexis      Bennett    5'8"    2009    Mt. View 4
35    Hannah    Pray    5'9    2011    Central 2
38    Megan    Phelps    5'10    2011    MDI 2
57    Beekah    Campbell    6'3    2011    Central 2

Class A East 29
Class A West 57
Class A West  57
#          Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
7    Michelle    Williams    5'5"    2009    Marshwood   8
8    Diana    Manduca    5'6    2009    Deering 8
11    Reegan    Brackett    5'6"    2009    Scarborough 2
14    Aimee    Mortensen - injured    5'5"    2009    Biddeford dns
15    Rachele    Burns    5'7    2009    Gorham dns
21    Georgia    Boisse    5'8"    2009    Massabesic 9
22    Keila    Grigware    5'8"    2011    Biddeford 6
36    Claire    Ramonas    5'10"    2010    Deering 11
40    Christy    Manning    5'11    2010    Scarborough 4
41    Brianna    Hawkins    5'11    2009    South Portland 2
51    Kayla    Burchill    6'0"    2011    Deering 7
Class A East 29
#              Name       Size    Grade      School    points in this game
1    Ariana    Perry    5'3    2010    Messalonskee dns
11    Kirsten    Prue    5'5"    2010    Edward Little 5
15    Whitney    Jones    5'6    2011    Skowhegan 3
16    Casey    McClusky    5'6    2009    PVHS 4
22    Alexa    Dearborn    5'7    2010    Brunswick dns
34    Tarra    Burr    5'9    2011    Morse 2
48    Megan    Joyce    6'0    2009    Oxford Hills 4
49    Kaley    Brown - injured    6'0"    2009    Skowhegan
55    Mardi      Artis    6'2"    2009    Brunswick 8
56    Kenzie    Smith    6'2"    2010    Skowhegan 3

Capers almost scale the mountain, but Falcons advance to Cla

Sport: Football  Posted: November 16th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

By Michael Hoffer
Special to MBR

'Sponsored by Rivalries'
"Where every day is a victory celebration"

RUMFORD—In a regional final that played out in anything but orthodox fashion, form held Saturday afternoon at Hosmer Field as the Mountain Valley Falcons won a third straight Western Class B title with a 28-19 victory over the very plucky Cape Elizabeth Capers.

With rain falling virtually throughout, the Falcons rode their two-headed rushing monster of seniors Justin Staires and Matt Laubauskas and parlayed an improbable two first period safeties into a lead they would never relinquish.

To its credit, Cape Elizabeth could have thrown in the towel down 16-0 in the second period, but the Capers embarked on three long scoring drives and were within three late in the final quarter before Mountain Valley finally secured its 11th straight victory this autumn, one which set up a state final showdown versus Morse next Saturday at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland.

“I think Cape played the best football I've seen them play all year,” said Falcons' coach Jim Aylward. “They're good. Like we expected. We kind of looked over when it was 16-0 and thought Cape might be down, but when Aaron Filieo's your coach, you won't stay down long.”

Mountain Valley and Cape Elizabeth have established a unique rivalry since the Capers made the move to Class B earlier this decade. In 2006 and 2007, the Falcons beat Cape Elizabeth in the regional final game. This year, Mountain Valley was never tested in a 9-0 regular season, while the Capers were more formidable than expected in going 8-1.

The Falcons beat Cape Elizabeth 34-6 (breaking the game open in the second half) in the regular season finale Oct. 31.

Saturday, Mountain Valley won the coin toss and deferred possession to the second half. Cape Elizabeth then began a quarter it would just as soon forget by losing 8 yards on three plays. After a 29-yard punt, the Falcons took over at the Capers' 47. Mountain Valley gained just 5 yards on three plays and set up to punt, but Staires saw room to his left, faked the punt and rumbled 18-yards to the Cape Elizabeth 24 for a new set of downs.

“I can't believe they didn't expect that play on the perimeter,” Aylward said. “That's a play we used in the Lobster Bowl when Aaron and I were on the same staff. They came out tried to do that to us two weeks ago. I think Justin and I were the most surprised people in the whole state when they weren't guarding the perimeter. If Justin knows he can get a first down, he goes for it.”

The Falcons moved the ball to the Capers' 2, but on fourth-and-goal, Staires was denied by juniors Ezra Wolfinger and Lucas Morin for a one-yard loss and Cape Elizabeth got the ball on downs.

After senior Matt Weiss was held to no gain on first down and Wolfinger threw incomplete, junior standout Tommy Foden got the ball, but was smothered in the backfield. Foden landed on the goal line with the majority of his body lying in the end zone and a safety was awarded to Mountain Valley, giving the hosts a 2-0 lead.

The Falcons then got the ball on a free kick and began at Cape Elizabeth's 22. Five plays later, Mountain Valley had its first touchdown when sophomore Cam Kaubris threw a quick strike to senior Travis Ruff for a 6-yard TD. The extra point was no good and the Falcons were up 8-0.

The Capers then began at their 27, but a sack by junior Ryan Laubauskas backed them up to their 19 and forced another punt. This time, the long snap went high and Wolfinger had to dive on the loose ball in the end zone for yet another safety, giving the Falcons a 10-0 lead with just 37.3 seconds to go in the first.

It's rare you see one safety in a game. Two in successive possessions is almost unheard of.

“It's a fluky thing,” Filieo said. “It's a Mountain Valley thing. When I was at South Portland playing against Biddeford the same things happened. They had a kickoff that bounced off our guy's shin. That's the type of thing that only happened against Biddeford. (Mountain Valley) put the ball on the ground a couple times and we just didn't get it. Once you crack that and we can beat them in a championship game, the rest will take care of itself.”

Another free kick gave Mountain Valley the ball at Cape Elizabeth's 27. In a drive that spanned the end of the first period and the start of the second, the Falcons used three plays to make it 16-0 when Staires scored on a 7-yard run. Even after Staires was denied on a two-point conversion run, Mountain Valley appeared en route to an easy victory.

But with 11:01 to play for the half, the Capers offense finally came to life.

After back-to-back Foden runs both gained 7-yards and Weiss ran for 5, Foden took the handoff, rolled left and beat the pursuit down the left sideline (deftly staying inbounds the whole way) for a 42-yard TD scamper. Wolfinger was sacked by senior John Gorham on the two-point conversion and it was a 16-6 contest.

“They put (senior Nate) Lavallee at the point of attack and we had a hard time stopping them,” Aylward said. “Tommy Foden's a tough back. They're good. That's what we expected.”

Mountain Valley then drove 65 yards on seven plays to score again. This time, Staires broke free for a 27-yard run (working his way out of several tackles) to set the stage, then Staires showed his throwing acumen with a 26-yard touchdown strike to Ruff on fourth-and-12. The two-point attempt ended with an incomplete pass, but the Falcons had extended their lead back to 16, 22-6.

“Some kids have better athletic ability, but Travis Ruff is a winner in everything he does,” Aylward said. “He's one of those kids we know will step up.”

Again, Cape Elizabeth answered.

This time, the Capers drove 63 yards on seven plays. Foden got it started with a 15-yard burst. With three minutes to play before halftime, Wolfinger passed to Foden in the flat and the standout did the rest, breaking a tackle before bursting down the left sideline to the end zone to cap a 36-yard scoring play. The two-point conversion failed and after the teams alternated interceptions, they went into the half with the hosts holding a 22-12 lead.

“We got good field position and we executed and didn't make mistakes,” Filieo said., of the second quarter surge. “In the first quarter, we just made too many mistakes and got in a hole. You can't do it on a day like today or against a team like that. They're such an aggressive defense. If you can get behind them with a guy like Tommy, you can take advantage of their aggressiveness.”

Mountain Valley gained a first down to start the third quarter, but a sack by Capers' freshman Max Gore short-circuited the drive and forced a punt. Cape Elizabeth then went three-and-out, but the Falcons did the same and had to punt again.

The Capers began at their 16 with 3:54 to go in the third quarter and embarked on easily the most impressive drive Mountain Valley had seen all season.

It took 8 minutes, 7 seconds and 18 plays before Cape Elizabeth scored to make things very interesting. Steady running from Foden and Weiss moved the chains. On fourth-and-1 at the Falcons' 15, Weiss ran for 3 yards. He then gained 7 and 2 respectively before Foden capped the march with a 3-yard run. Junior Matt Donovan's extra point made it 22-19 with 7:47 remaining and suddenly, all the pressure was on the Mountain Valley offense.

The Falcons would rise to the challenge.

The drive began at the Mountain Valley 38. On first down, Laubauskas rumbled for 15 yards. On third-and-6 at the Capers' 43, Staires gained 6 yards and the first down. Three plays later, Laubauskas burst up the middle to set up first-and-goal at the 6. After Kaubris gained 2 yards and the Falcons were penalized 5 for an equipment violation, Staires bulled his way to the 1. Then, with 2:29 to play, Kaubris gave his team some breathing room with a 1-yard run. The two-point conversion snap was fumbled, but Mountain Valley had a two-possession lead, 28-19.

“It's a drive we had to have,” Aylward said. “Our backs were against the wall. We had a hard time keeping Matt and Justin in the game in the second half. I wasn't sure either one would be in the backfield the final possession. Justin has a banged up hand. Matt threw himself in a brick wall 100 times and was banged up.

“Matt's a power runner. He doesn't get fancy. Justin showed great patience today. There are times where he knew he had to suck it up and take a two-yard gain.”

Cape Elizabeth got the ball back at its 44 five seconds later, but Wolfinger threw incomplete three straight times, then was sacked for a 10-yard loss by sophomore Christian Durland, turning the ball over on downs. Kaubris took a knee four straight times to give the ball back to the Capers with 22 seconds to play, but after Wolfinger was held to no gain, the clock ran out and the Falcons could celebrate another regional championship.

“Our kids played their (rears) off today,” Aylward said. “I'm proud of all our seniors. This is the fourth year in a row we've played in the Western Maine championship game. We're here every year.”

Staires led the offense with 137 yards and a score on 22 carries. He also completed one-of-two passes for 26 yards and a TD. Laubauskas rushed for 103 yards on 19 carries. Kaubris was 2-of-6 for 24 yards and an interception. Mountain Valley gained 278 yards and turned the ball over just once. The Falcons overcame 9 penalties for 60 yards.

Cape Elizabeth finished 9-2 and left town lamenting what if.

“Coming up here, I thought the weather would favor us because we could throw,” Filieo said. “With a drier turf, we could have gotten the ball to (junior) Finn (Melanson) a little more on deeper patterns. One of the things I love about football is that you never know. Our game plan wasn't to run our fullback. You go with what works. That kid ran like he never ran before. He literally got that touchdown to get us within three.”

That fullback, Weiss, finished with 46 yards on eight carries. Foden led the way with a gutsy 109 yards and two scores on 21 carries. He also caught two passes for 41 yards and a score. Wolfinger finished 5-of-11 for 51 yards, a TD and an interception.

The Capers, who had negative-38 yards in the first period, wound up with 163 on the day.
Considering the fact Cape Elizabeth retains most of its firepower, while Mountain Valley will be hit hard by graduation, the rivalry might finally turn the Capers way in 2009.

“We got a lot of skill guys coming back and a good portion of our offensive and defensive lines back,” Filieo said. “It's easy to say next year, next year, but we felt we could knock these guys off this year. No one else felt that way, but we knew we were better than people thought. It was us and Mountain Valley. It's nice to have guys back, but the seniors, besides Nathaniel and Matt Weiss, came from nowhere and took the team and continued the tradition. When the dust settles, they can look back and see they did. I'm real proud of the way these guys came out and played today. I've really learned to love these guys. It's been a long road.”

The Falcons now turn their attention to a red-hot Morse squad, which won the Eastern B title Saturday with a 10-7 victory at Mt. Desert Island. It was the Shipbuilders' eighth straight win since starting the season 0-2.

Mountain Valley is still stinging over last year's 21-14 loss to Gardiner in the Class B Final. Rest assured, the Falcons will be ready this time as they chase their third title in five seasons.

“All we want to do is just play,” Aylward said. “We can't guarantee this or guarantee that. It's a privilege to get there and we'll prepare. The goal's to get to the last dance. We remember we lost last year. It gives us a little extra motivation.”

CE-    0    12    0    7-    19
MV-    10    12    0    6-    28
First quarter
MV—Safety, Foden tackled in end zone
MV—Ruff 6 pass from Kaubris (kick failed)
MV—Safety, Wolfinger tackled in end zone
Second quarter
MV—Staires 7 run (run failed)
CE—Foden 42 run (pass failed)
MV—Ruff 26 pass from Staires (pass failed)
CE—Foden 36 pass from Wolfinger (pass failed)
Third quarter
No scoring
Fourth quarter
CE—Foden 3 run (Donovan kick)
MV—Kaubris 1 run (run failed)

CE- Foden 21-109-2, Weiss 8-46, Lawlor 1-3, Piscopo 1-0, Wolfinger 1-0
MV-Staires 22-137-1, Laubauskas 19-103, Gorham 1-2, Kaubris 7-0-1
CE—Wolfinger 5-11-51-1-1
MV—Kaubris 2-6-24-1, Staires 1-2-26-1
CE—Melanson 3-10, Foden 2-41-1
MV—Ruff 3-50-2
CE-1 (Gore)
MV-4 (R. Laubauskas, Jeselskis, Durland, and M. Laubauskas, Gorham shared)

8th Annual MBR.ORG ( H.S. Preseason Basketball )Interclass All-Star Weekend

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: November 15th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

160 x allstarweekend
8th Annual MBR.ORG ( H.S. Preseason Basketball )Interclass All-Star Weekend
MBR.ORG is hosting the 8th Annual  MBR.ORG Preseason Interclass All Star Weekend at St. Joseph's College in Standish on the weekend of November 15 and November 16.
Five Girls basketball games ( starting at 3:00pm) will be played on Saturday, Nov. 15 and six Boys basketball games ( starting at noon) will be played on Sunday, Nov. 16.
In addition, on Sunday the very popular dunk contest will begin at 5:00 pm following an exhibition game between Lee Academy Prep  vs Coach Carl Parkers MBR 17u team.  This game will feature many division I recruits from both teams, including Dirigo's Thomas Knight - verbally committed to play in the Big East at Notre Dame
200 of Maine's best Boys and Girls will compete in this pre-season extravaganza. MBR invites 10 Players representing each class: A, B, C, D Eastern Maine and Western Maine as well as 10 freshmen - class of 2012 ( Futures game) from the east and west.  Each team will play 1 game to showcase the players from their class and division. The opponents will be from the opposing part of the state, i.e. if you’re from the East, you’ll play West teams and you’ll play your counterpart. For example., A East will play A West.
The event has evolved into one of the best basketball events in the state of Maine. This event is designed to be a fun pre-season showcase, a prelude to the season. An opportunity for fans and players alike to see the top players from the different classes from Eastern and Western Maine compete.  
Admission is: $ 5.00  - This is good for the weekend, or the day, or a game..
Players are encouraged to come and support players from the opposite gender side and of course have free admittance
Rosters , schedules, directions, etc. will be posted on http://www.allstarweekend.org

or visit http://www.mbr.org   

2008 rosters..  Print your rosters here for the weekend event..


Girls event on Sat. Nov. 15 - Click here

Boys event on Sunday, Nov. 16 - Click here




Knight-ed by Irish Dirigo hoop star signs letter of intent with Notre Dame

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: November 14th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

"He really stood out for us when we saw him in Orlando at the AAU nationals," said Brey, who visited Knight's home and school in October. "The game comes easily to him. He's a skilled big man. He has good hands and feet, which is true of the big guys who've been successful for us."

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Rollins ready to roll at Harvard

Sport: Basketball (Girls)  Posted: November 13th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

Last season, Rollins started all 29 games, averaging a team-high 11.4 points along with 4.4 rebounds a game. During her career, the former Miss Maine Basketball has started 68 of 74 games for the Crimson while averaging just more than 10 points and just less than 20 minutes a contest.

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LTC final features potent offenses - Bucksport hosts Bapst Saturday

Sport: Football  Posted: November 13th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

When they last met in Week 1 of the season, the Golden Bucks had the ball last — in overtime — and used a two-point conversion run by Nate Warren to outscore the Crusaders’ seven-point possession and earn a 40-39 victory.

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Dirigo basketball star Knight picks Notre Dame

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: November 13th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

“One thing that really attracted the D1 coaches is the fact that at 6-8 Tom can step outside and shoot the perimeter shot as well as anybody, along with his ability in the low post,” said Kane. “This combination offensively really will help him at the next level. Tom also is a strong rebounder with a very quick outlet pass. He has a tremendous feel for the game and passes the ball exceptionally well for a big man.”

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The horses need a reign

Sport: Football  Posted: November 13th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

SACO — Call them the Trojan Horses, a trio of running backs who have powered Thornton Academy´s football team to a 10-0 record and a spot in the Western Class A championship game for the first time since 1993. And if the Trojans are going to unseat defending state champion Bonny Eagle on Saturday at Hill Stadium, juniors Zach Sheehan and Peter Remmes, and senior Mark Reaser are going to have to carry a very heavy load

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Lawrence hockey coach resigns

Sport: Hockey (Boys)  Posted: November 11th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

Lawrence High School hockey coach Yvon Boudreau has resigned, citing a conflicting work schedule. Boudreau, who led the Bulldogs to the Eastern A semifinals last season, recently opened a Metropolitan Life Insurance satellite office on Main Street in Waterville.

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Bonny Eagle holds off Deering, advances to regional final

Sport: Football  Posted: November 11th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

By Michael Hoffer
Special to MBR

'Sponsored by Rivalries'
"Where every day is a victory celebration"

PORTLAND—Class A football teams, consider yourselves warned:

Don't get the Bonny Eagle Scots angry and if you're going to beat them, make sure you do so when you won't have to see them again with the season on the line.

The Deering Rams learned that painful lesson Saturday afternoon at Memorial Stadium where the vengeful Scots returned a fumble for a touchdown on the game's first play and never trailed en route to a 26-14 victory.

Bonny Eagle led by as much as 20-0 early in the second half, but Deering, seeking to replicate its scintillating rally of four weeks ago, scored two quick TDs. Undaunted, the Scots wouldn't be denied, getting a touchdown run from senior Josh Ruby and some timely defensive plays to earn a date in Saturday's Western Class A Final at undefeated Thornton Academy.

“Our goal is to win a state championship and we obviously knew when we lost (29-28 to Deering in Week 6) that we'd probably be here for the semifinals,” Bonny Eagle coach Kevin Cooper said. “We really didn't hammer it into the kids' heads this week, going to get revenge at Deering. Deering just happened to be a team to beat to get there.”

The Scots have won three of the past four state titles and had another stellar regular season, even though their 6-2 record might have hinted at mortality. Bonny Eagle had to forfeit an early-season victory over Westbrook after self-reporting the use of an ineligible player. The Scots then failed to hold a 28-14 lead with just over three minutes to play against visiting Deering Oct. 10 and were relegated to the No. 4 seed for the Western A playoffs.

The Rams, meanwhile, enjoyed their first unbeaten regular season since their championship year of 2003. Deering crushed virtually every foe with its high-powered offense and featured a defense that simply got better and better as the year progressed.

Both teams easily took care of business in the quarterfinals. The top-ranked Rams pummeled No. 8 Gorham 48-6, while the Scots downed No. 5 Cheverus 35-0 to set up a fourth postseason showdown in five years.

Bonny Eagle eliminated Deering in the 2004 (40-7) and 2007 (28-13) semifinals round, while the Rams pulled a 28-20 upset at the Scots in the 2006 semis.

While Saturday's contest didn't match the drama of the regular season meeting, it certainly had its moments.

Bonny Eagle won the opening coin toss and deferred possession to the second half.

It turned out to be a brilliant move.

After sophomore Sam Balzano returned the opening kick 10 yards to the Deering 21, disaster struck for the hosts. Senior standout Jack Heary took a handoff, was hit at the line of scrimmage and fumbled. The ball bounced right into the eager and waiting hands of Scots' senior star Nate Doehler at the 24 and Doehler raced down the right sideline into the end zone to give Bonny Eagle a 7-0 lead it wouldn't relinquish.

The Rams gained a first down on their next possession when sophomore quarterback Jamie Ross rolled left for 21 yards on third-and-12, but Deering eventually had to punt and the Scots took over offensively for the first time at their 44.

Back-to-back runs by Doehler both lost two yards and an incomplete pass forced a Bonny Eagle punt. The Rams then moved into Scots' territory on a 33-yard pass play from Ross to Balzano. A personal foul penalty and two false starts ultimately doomed the drive and Deering had to punt again.

Bonny Eagle took over at its 16 late in the first quarter and embarked on a march that would extend its lead.

An 11-yard run by Doehler, a 28-yard Doehler-to-junior Joe Davis pass play and an unsportsmanlike conduct call on the hosts moved the ball into Rams' territory. The Scots faced a fourth-and-12 at the Deering 28, but Doehler threw a gorgeous fade to the right sideline where senior Travis Dunn came down with it (barely getting a foot inbounds) for a first down at the 6. Three plays later, Doehler dove over from the 1. He then added the extra point and Bonny Eagle led 14-0 with 6:48 to go in the first half.

The drive encompassed 13 plays and 7 minutes, 9 seconds.

The Rams moved to the Scots' 14 on their next drive, but Heary was thrown for a 4-yard loss on third-and-5 and after a timeout, Ross' pass fell incomplete, giving Bonny Eagle the ball with 1:54 to go. Three runs for 13 yards brought the curtain down on the first half.

The teams combined for just 189 yards of offense (Deering had a 96-93 edge). Heary managed just 42 yards on 12 carries.

The Scots got the ball to start the second half and threatened to put the game out of reach with another scoring drive. A 23-yard pass from Doehler-to-junior Donald Hildreth got things started. Doehler then broke a pair of tackles en route to a 38-yard scamper to put the ball at the Rams' 14. After Doehler ran for 11 more, Ruby got in on the act, scoring on a 3-yard run. Doehler's extra point was blocked, but Bonny Eagle led 20-0.

As it turned out, the Rams had the Scots right where they wanted them.

On the first play of the ensuing series, Ross faked a handoff, dropped back and unleashed a bomb down the middle that was snared by Balzano running free. Balzano outraced the pursuit to the end zone, capping a 77-yard scoring play and putting Deering on the board. Ross' extra point was no good, but with 9:12 to play in the third, it was a 20-6 game.

Bonny Eagle then went three-and-out and after a high snap, Doehler's punt was blocked by Rams' senior Ernie Salamone. Senior Ben Sawyer pounced on the loose football and Deering was in great shape at the Scots' 16. After Heary was thrown for a 3-yard loss on first down, Ross rolled left, threw a rainbow toward the left pylon and Heary leaped and wrestled the ball away from Ruby before landing in the end zone. Ross then hit Balzano (who caught the ball after it was tipped) for the two-point conversion and suddenly the Rams were right back in it, down 20-14.

Bonny Eagle momentarily restored order on its next drive when six Doehler runs led to a pair of first downs, but ultimately the Scots had to punt from the Deering 49 and the Rams got the ball back with a chance to improbably take the lead.

Deering started at its 14 and picked up a first down, but on second-and-9 from its 25, Ross was intercepted by Davis. After Doehler was held to no gain on a run that ended the third quarter, the Rams got the ball right back on the first play of the fourth when Doehler's pass to Davis in the end zone was tipped by Heary and snared by junior Travis Wade.

Unfortunately for the hosts, the turnover-fest continued on the next play when Ross was picked by Bonny Eagle junior Stephen Martin, who returned the ball to the Deering 31.

“It was two hard, physical football teams playing and trying to make plays,” Cooper said. “Everyone talks about the offenses, but these are good defenses too. A lot of the turnovers were defenses making plays. Wade made that pick where we thought we had six. They had pressure on Nate. It was a great defensive play on them. Then we came back and made an unbelievable defensive play.”

This time, the Scots took advantage and earned a little breathing room. Ruby ran for 6 yards on first down and Doehler followed with runs of 2 and 6-yards for a first down at the 17. Ruby then took the ball and ran up the gut untouched until Heary leveled him at the goal line. Ruby broke the plane, however, and after a two-point conversion pass was picked off, Bonny Eagle was up 26-14 with 9:23 to go.

Order had been restored.

“We knew they had a chance to come back,” Doehler said. “We remembered back to week 6 when the same thing happened. We just couldn't take that feeling again. No one gave up. Everyone stayed focused and played hard.”

“How could we not be worried?” Cooper added. “They're good and can score in a hurry. We just tried to stress to the guys that we were still ahead and we had to keep playing.”

The Scots defense, which excelled from start to finish, especially in preventing Heary from enjoying his usual rampage, then stepped up and forced a three-and-out.

Bonny Eagle took over at its 38 with 8:52 to go and began thinking about milking the clock. Unfortunately, the first snap of the series was fumbled and Rams' senior Matt Becker recovered at the 39.

Deering couldn't capitalize. After Heary twice ran for 2 yards, Ross dropped back and was hit by Scots' senior Dayton McPherson. Junior Josh Lund helped finish Ross off for a 16-yard sack.

“What it did was put Deering in a tough fourth down play,” Cooper said. “Dayton came up with the sack and they had 4th-and-20 or so. That's obviously a play where the defense has the advantage. Dayton's a fantastic player. He played great today. That sack was huge.”

On fourth-and-22, Ross ran for just 9 yards, turning the ball over on downs.

A holding penalty short-circuited Bonny Eagle's bid to ice the game and the Scots had to punt once more. With 4:27 to play, the Rams began at midfield. Despite the lack of time and a 12-point deficit, Heary ran three straight times. After an incomplete pass, Deering took a timeout with 2:26 to go. Ross then tried to hit Salamone for a first down, but the Scots broke it up, and the win was all-but-official.

Four plays later, Doehler broke free for a 33-yard scamper to the Rams' 27. He then took two knees and the clock ran out. Bonny Eagle moved on with the 26-14 win.

“We've been waiting for this for awhile,” Doehler said. “We wanted to see them again and show them what we have. We didn't show everything we have back then. Everyone, the whole community, just supports us. They're the greatest. We're all proud of that. We all love to play for this team and wouldn't want to play anywhere else.”

Deering (9-1) only managed 208 yards of offense and was hindered by eight penalties for 73 yards and three turnovers. Heary was held to 67 yards on 19 carries. He did catch the one pass for 19 yards and a TD. Ross went 6-for-18 for 162 yards and two TDs. He was also intercepted twice. He ran five times for 34 yards. Balzano was the leading receiver, making three grabs for 121 yards and a score.

Cooper tipped his cap to the vanquished.

“They treat the game of football like we treat it,” he said. “Their kids play with a lot of passion. It was fun for me to be a part of it.”

While Bonny Eagle turned the ball over twice and had seven penalties for 62 yards, it did enough to hold on. Doehler ran for 137 yards and a TD on 25 carries. He also threw for 100 yards on 8-of-17 passing with an interception. Ruby wound up gaining 33 yards and scoring twice on eight carries.

The Scots (8-2) now turn their attention to visiting another undefeated team in the regional final Saturday. Thornton Academy (10-0 after a stirring 35-28 come-from-behind win over Windham in its semifinal) is desperately seeking respect after being in Bonny Eagle and Deering's shadow all fall.

Cooper expects a challenge.

“(Thornton Academy's) very skilled on offense,” he said. “It's very sophisticated, a lot like us, trying to get a lot of guys involved. They're very well coached. I think it's going to be a great battle down there next week.”

BE-    7    7    6    6-    26
D-    0    0    14    0-    14
First quarter
BE—Doehler 24 fumble return (Doehler kick)
Second quarter
BE—Doehler 1 run (Doehler kick)
Third quarter
BE—Ruby 3 run (kick blocked)
D—Balzano 77 pass from Ross (kick failed)
D—Heary 19 pass from Ross (Balzano pass from Ross)
Fourth quarter
BE—Ruby 17 run (pass failed)

BE- Doehler 25-137-1, Ruby 8-33-2, Davis 1 (-4), Adkins 1-4
D-Heary 19-67, Ross 5-34, Alves 1-1
BE-Doehler 8-17-100-1-0
D-Ross 6-18-162-2-2
BE-Davis 2-35, Dunn 2-27, Ruby 2-14, Hildreth 1-23, Alfiero 1-1
D-Balzano 3-121-1, Heary 1-19-1, Alves 1-15, Hardy 1-7
D- 3

New QB, but Thornton keeps rolling

Sport: Football  Posted: November 9th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

With Steve Trask leaving the game with a right knee injury just before halftime, Trull stepped in and led Thornton Academy to a 35-28 victory against Windham in a Western Class A semifinal at Hill Stadium.

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Bonny Eagle, when it really counts

Sport: Football  Posted: November 9th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

This time Bonny Eagle didn't let the game slip away. What must have seemed eerily similar at times to its regular-season loss to Deering, the Scots this time maintained their poise, made big plays in the fourth quarter and earned their second consecutive trip to the Western Class A final with a 26-14 victory against the Rams before an estimated 4,000 fans at Memorial Field.

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Cape Elizabeth ousts York in football playoffs

Sport: Football  Posted: November 9th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

No. 2 Cape Elizabeth (9-1) scored three unanswered touchdowns, shut down York's offense and walked away with a 21-13 victory that sent it to the Western Maine title game for the third straight season. The Capers will play at No. 1 Mountain Valley (10-0) for the regional title next Saturday. The Falcons advanced with a 41-6 win over No. 4 Falmouth on Friday night.

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